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May 1st, 2013 WW Editorial Staff | Letters to the Editor
 

Inbox: Tooth and Nailed

     
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Despite your efforts to influence Portland’s fluoride vote by painting a picture of fluoride opponents as a small group of radical, unscientific loonies [“Molar Majority,” WW, April 24, 2013], your shamelessly biased journalism doesn’t seem to be working in your favor. Drive around this town and count the number of pro-fluoride signs. Then count the anti-fluoride signs—they outnumber the pro-fluoride signs 10 to 1.

And that’s despite the $143,000 that Healthy Kids, Healthy Portland doled out to campaign supporters—money that was supposedly spent on “buttons and yard signs” [“Visits From the Tooth Fairy,” WW, April 24, 2013]. Take a look at the list of [anti-fluoride campaign] Clean Water Portland’s supporters—groups like the Sierra Club, the NAACP and the EPA Headquarters Union of Scientists. And how about the debates in Portland? Is it possible you haven’t been reporting on them because the pro-fluoride platform isn’t coming out on top?

Clean Water Portland and its supporters are a determined and resourceful group of intelligent, well-informed people—many of them doctors and dentists—who are passionate about leading Portland beyond an antiquated forced-medication solution that the rest of the country is happy to settle for. We don’t accept that polluting the Bull Run water supply is the only way to treat a targeted segment of the population.

Leveraging your power as a “news source” to lobby the public to vote a certain way damages your credibility. Keep your opinions out of your paper, or stop reporting on the issue altogether.

Elena Cronin
Northeast Portland


THE NEED FOR SPEED

Your little Adderall story [“Take With Homework,” WW, April 24, 2013] was fine (and funny!) as far as it went. As usual with Adderall stories, it did not go very far.

Adderall is speed. According to Wikipedia, it is a combination of four amphetamine salts. The real story behind this cutesy “bankrupt substitute teacher pushes pills” news story is about Big Pharma. When it comes to the concerns of some parents about their children being “medicated,” the media does not seem to feel empowered to mention that amphetamines and Ritalin are classified as psychic energizers along with, ahem, cocaine.

When Dr. Joseph Glenmullen’s book Prozac Backlash was published in 2001, he made an analogy between SSRIs like Prozac and amphetamines. Amphetamines became popular around 1955, and by 1965 there were anecdotal reports piling up about problems. By 1975 there were congressional hearings about serious dangers, and by 1985 amphetamines were understood to be very dangerous drugs that should never have been prescribed for weight loss or depression. After 30 years, a drug is out of patent and no longer lucrative. Glenmullen called this the 10-20-30-year pattern.

What probably never occurred to Glenmullen was that amphetamines would have a second hideous day in the sun—aka a time for shareholders to get paid.

Jeremy Szold Ginzberg
Northeast Portland

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR must include the author’s street address and phone number for verification. Letters must be 250 or fewer words.
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